A serious car accident on I-285 in the early morning hours of December 15, 2015 claimed the life of a Conyers woman. Police identified the deceased as Patricia Hay, 29. Hay was the passenger in a GMC Sierra pickup truck that struck the back of a flatbed truck that was stopped in the right shoulder. Hay was killed on impact and ejected from the pickup truck. After the pickup truck came to a rest, a Honda Civic that drove upon the accident scene was unable to avoid striking it and collided with the passenger side of the truck. The pickup truck driver and the driver and a passenger in the Honda Civic were transported to Grady Memorial Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Police have indicated that alcohol may have been a factor in the wreck. Another factor that police should exam is why the flatbed truck was parked in the emergency lane in the first place. Under Georgia law, it is illegal for drivers to park their vehicles in the emergency lane, unless there is an actual emergency. I previously represented a client who was injured when the driver of the vehicle he was riding in struck the rear of a tractor-trailer that improperly stopped in an emergency lane. If the flatbed truck in this case did not have an actual emergency that justified being stopped in the emergency lane, the driver of the vehicle, and the company he was working for, may be liable for the Hay’s death and the injuries the other individuals sustained. Even if the flatbed truck driver had an adequate justification for being parked there, he still could be held liable if his negligence caused the emergency. For example, if he did not properly maintain the truck, which caused it to breakdown on the highway and forced him to park in the emergency lane, then he may be responsible. Last, police should examine whether the flatbed truck was improperly positioned in the emergency lane.
This accident is just one example of why I-285 is considered the deadliest interstate in the country. If you were injured or lost a loved one in a car accident on I-285, call the Atlanta, Georgia personal injury lawyers at The Champion Firm, P.C., for a free consultation.